Scroll up in real (Ctrl + Alt + F2) terminal output beyond last screen

In a “real” terminal (I mean the ones you get to by Ctrl + Alt + F2 through F9 except F7), can you scroll up beyond the top edge of the monitor the way you could beyond the top edge of the window in a terminal emulator?

If that is not possible, can you tell the real terminal to save its output to a file (in addition to showing me real time) so that I can later look at it? Thanks.

you can output to a file by

command > file

and you can scroll through output by using

command | less


As to your issue … yeah less is probably what you want.

Also note that some editors are easier to manage this as well - ex: micro.

Well … technically TTY is a virtual teletype terminal. :wink:

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Thank you.

That solves it for me.

I am adding some links (elaborating on your answer) for anybody else that might land here.

Just to add some further clarification to the replies above, it used to be possible to scroll up in a tty by using Shift+PgUp and/or Shift+, but considering that the framebuffer for the Linux console is coded in the kernel, this code for allowing scroll-back in a tty was dropped from the kernel at some point.

It may however still work if you’re running an older LTS kernel — I’m not sure anymore when exactly the code was dropped, but I’m guessing that it’ll still work in the currently still supported 4.x LTS kernels.



The arrows no longer work, but Shift + PgUp or PgDown still works for me on 6.2, and I’ve used it on the 5.x series too. I don’t remember having to configure it, but I may have forgotten.

However it is limited, if you switch ttys and back again it won’t work until you make more output and it will only scroll up/down by 2 full pages plus 1 line.


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